Reviews, Training

Orangetheory for Runners: What to expect your first workout

What is it like to take an Orangetheory class for the first time?

There is an Orangetheory Fitness right down the street from where I live.  I have been meaning to check it out, but I was apprehensive because of the cost.  Luckily, a friend of mine joined and was able to talk me into going with him. Equally as lucky, I had a birthday coming up and my husband was at a loss for what to get me…

The First Workout is Free at Orangetheory

Like any good drug, the first hit is always free.  Sometimes, they do incentives for the friend that brings you in.  This month, they were giving away gift cards, and I was able to sign up at the founders rate.  You have to schedule your first class ahead of time by calling into the studio. They tell you to get there at least 15 minutes early, so you can meet with the coach and get a rundown.

What Happens When you Enter the Orangetheory Studio?

When I got to my local Orangetheory, the sales associate gave me a tour (the studio is tiny, this didn’t take long).  She strapped a heart rate monitor on me, and had me fill out a form. They take your age and weight for their heart rate and calorie burn algorithms.   She then asked me about my goals (to lose weight and get faster, duh) and introduced me to the coach who was leading the day’s workout. The coach explained how the workouts are formatted and went over proper form on the treadmill and rower.  I was happy to hear that he is also a marathon runner and uses Orangetheory to compliment his running. It was now time for class to begin!

The Orangetheory Workout

Every Orangetheory workout is different, but each one includes treadmill running and strength training.  This one included treadmill, rowing, and weights. It even had us hopping on and off the treadmills for medicine ball plyometrics.  As I went through the workout, the coach did a great job of explaining what to do and what was coming next. Even though this was my first Orangetheory workout, I was never confused.

The Treadmill Workout

I started on the treadmills.  They have you run at a 1% incline at “base pace”.  Intervals can include an increase in pace and/or and increase in incline, with active recovery in between blocks.  What’s great is that you run at your own pace. There are also power walkers who walk the treadmill portion at high inclines. For those who want to stay off the treadmill, there is also a spin bike and elliptical you can use.  For the duration of the run, you can check your heart rate and zone on the TV screen. You want to be in the orange zone for active intervals and the green zone for recovery intervals.

The Strength Workout

The floor portion consists of different moves, broken into rounds.  The coach demoed each move before the round started. While I was doing the moves, he also came around to check our form and to let us know how much time we had left.  This particular workout had us moving between the weight floor and the rowers. Again, I was never confused, everything is on a screen with little animated people showing you the moves in case you forget.

My First Orangetheory Workout: Final Verdict

By the end of the active 53 minutes, I was drenched in sweat.  I had 15 “Splat Points” and burned over 500 calories. The coach kept me after class and went over my heart rate zone data.  I thanked him for the ass beating, then went out into the lobby where the sales associate talked about membership options. I never felt pressured or intimidated.  I was actually pleasantly surprised with the whole experience. So much so, that I ended up going with the unlimited membership option.

The coach texted me later that day to see if I had any questions.  I loved the whole experience. I have been a member of big gyms for years.  Though much more affordable, I don’t get the same level of attention I get from Orangetheory.  If you are on the fence about trying your first class, go!

Orangetheory workout for runners
What to expect your first Orangetheory Workout

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